|Machinery Relieves Workers from Backbreaking Drudgery
Taking a Risk for the Benefit of Many
Setting New Sights for Glass Technology
|Setting New Sights for Glass Technology|
|In 1965, almost half a century after its founding, Nippon Sheet Glass again demonstrated its pioneering spirit in pursuit of new technology when it became the first company in the Far East to produce sheet glass using the float glass manufacturing process.
Prior to that, it had been difficult to make perfectly flat sheet glass of consistent thickness, and glass for use in mirrors or automotive applications had to be ground with an abrasive. The labor-intensive process required large-scale facilities, and the grinding process spoiled the luster of the glass surface. The float glass manufacturing process solved these problems by floating the glass in a liquida dramatic technical innovation that only happens once every 50 years or so.
Nippon Sheet Glass led the industry in signing a contract to introduce the new technology over three years, and surprised the whole world when it developed float glass manufacturing technology for extra-thick sheet glass of 8 mm or more (for which there was substantial demand in the construction industry), more quickly than the company supplying the original technology.
Subsequently, the firm transferred the technology to other countries, mainly in Asia, and produced glass locally, contributing to the acquisition of technical skills and industrialization of various nations. The Nippon Sheet Glass Group now employs 12,000 people worldwide, with three-quarters of its employees outside Japan.
Nippon Sheet Glass is currently developing cutting-edge technology to pioneer the next generation of projects ranging from glass & building materials, transportation glass and materials, information technology, to glass fiber. Its management is constantly guided by the precept that making a profit should be done so as to benefit society as a whole.
Preparation of this article was overseen and photos provided by the Sumitomo Shi-ryo-kan and Nippon Sheet Glass.
CORPORATE DATA (As of September, 2004)